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Project Team Rewards
5.1. Current Role and Use of Rewards in Project Teams
This section answers research question one: ‘What is the current role and use of
rewards in project teams?
Research uncovered that rewards are actually used in project management. The
Gesellschaft für Projektmanagement e.V. (German Society for Project
found out that around 26% of project members get rewards (GPM 2005).
The study is based on the society’s members and is not representative for all project teams.
Still, it proves that project teams are rewarded in at least some organisations. In addition,
several case studies were analysed that prove that rewards are actually used in some
organisations (see 6. Verification of the Results / Case Studies Analysis, p. 59). A few
workshops offering information about rewarding project teams also exist (e.g. BIA 2006,
CETPA 2006, and EOGOGICS 2006). Hence, it seems certain that some project teams get
rewards, although the exact number is unknown.
The literature research has uncovered that the perceived role of rewards in project
management does not differ significantly from rewards in line management. Project
managers, wanting to reward their team, have two types of academic sources they can get
information about rewards from: project management literature and reward literature. As
found out, three perspectives exist in the reward literature. In project management
literature, predominantly the perspective of the extreme reward proponents or a very
superficial view of the modest reward proponents is advocated. In any case, special project
characteristics are not considered, except that milestones and the project’s end are
potential points in time to reward the team. Also further literature-research has found no
evidence that project managers do consciously consider a project’s characteristics as
influencing factors for answering the reward questions. Therefore, it seems reasonable to
conclude that the current role of rewards for project teams is similar to the role of rewards
for line employees. 
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